Just when you think the Philadelphia Flyers are shutting down, they show you that they are not done just yet. On a weekend where the Flyers needed to get at least three points, they got a possible four out of four, and swept the weekend slate of games.
With the sweep, the Flyers put themselves back in the top-3 in the Metro division, and two points ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets, three ahead of the New Jersey Devils, and eight ahead of the Florida Panthers, who are currently on the outside of the playoff picture.
The team responded the way that they should have after only winning one game up until Saturday night’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes. The schedule gets a little bit easier from here, but they still have a stretch of games against teams currently in playoff positions, starting with the Pittsburgh Penguins on March 25.
However, before diving into what lies ahead for the Flyers, let’s take a look at the last two games for the Orange and Black:
Saturday vs. Carolina Hurricanes
- After two slow periods of hockey, most of this game came down to the third period where the Flyers scored four goals in 12 minutes. Travis Konecny, Jake Voracek, Valtteri Filppula, and Michael Raffl each scored for the Flyers with Filppula scoring the game winner. Filppula got stuck behind a ref trying to get into the defensive zone, but it ended up benefiting him and the Flyers when Wayne Simmonds found Filppula, and he deked out Cam Ward for the goal.
- Oskar Lindblom earned his first NHL point with an assist on Voracek’s goal.
- Alex Lyon had a good game in net, and kept the Flyers in the lead after they earned it.
Sunday vs. Washington Capitals
- Lindblom scored his first NHL goal a day after scoring his first NHL point. A big weekend for the rookie.
- Travis Konecny blocked two shots basically in the spot, and left the ice for a little bit of time. He also got into one hell of a fight with T.J. Oshie. Simmonds called him a Tasmanian Devil in an interview, and I could not agree more.
- Speaking of Simmonds, he scored two of the Flyers’ six goals. It was the 31st multi-goal game of his career, and gave him his 23rd goal of the season.
- A bounce-back performance for Petr Mrazek. He stopped 25 of 28 shots, made a few good saves, and looked a lot better in net than Flyers fans have seen in his last few starts. Now, he needs to build off this performance and stay consistent.
Breaking down the next nine games
- Tuesday’s game at the Red Wings and Thursday’s vs. the Rangers should be relatively easier games for the Flyers considering both teams are currently out of playoff contention. If the Flyers play the way they played against the Capitals, the rest of the week should be easy.
- The match-up between the Penguins and Flyers on March 25 should be the most important game of the next nine. Not only are the Penguins ahead of the Flyers in the Metro, but they are starting to look more and more like the match-up in the first round of the playoffs. The Penguins have won all of the match-ups against the Flyers this season.
- After those three games, the Flyers face three playoff-bound teams in the Dallas Stars, Colorado Avalanche, and Boston Bruins. Dallas currently occupies the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference, and has been flipping on and off with the Colorado Avalanche for the wild-card spots. Meanwhile, Boston is only a few points behind the Eastern Conference leading Tampa Bay Lightning.
- They round out the schedule with the Islanders, Hurricanes, and Rangers, with the final two games at home. As long as they stay consistent, the Flyers shouldn’t have trouble with those games.
It’s going to be an interesting few games for the Flyers.